You want a new job, or you’re at least in the process of looking for one. How do we know that? Because you’re reading this on My Christian Daily Jobs, and you wouldn’t be reading this article if it were not the case!
When you’re looking for a new position, it is important that you do your homework. Christian organizations also have rigorous hiring procedures, as every organization needs to find the right fit. In fact many use recruitment companies to ensure this fit is right, so don’t think for a moment you can slacken off
At the beginning of your job search it is important that you get yourself in a positive frame of mind. If you’re determined and you develop a good understanding of how to manage a professional job search, you will succeed.
Understanding the process is essential, and in this article, we will share 10 steps that will help you to find the right job.
- Create a killer cover letter
Your cover letter is the perfect opportunity to showcase your personality and highlight the skills you bring to the table. That’s why it’s necessary to customize each cover letter you write to the job opening in question rather than use a generic version repeatedly. Your cover letter should discuss the reasons you’re the right fit for the role at hand, and, if possible, offer examples of how you’ve succeeded at a similar or related role in the past. And as is the case for your resume, that cover letter needs to be grammatically clean. Otherwise, you risk coming off as sloppy and unprofessional.
- Tweak your CV with each position you are applying for
Don't simply send off the same old CV for every job. Take the time to customize your CV; read the job advertisement or specification carefully, pick out the essential skills and experience required, and make sure your CV demonstrates you really do have the required experience. Do that for every job application and you will see a dramatic improvement in the number of times you get shortlisted for interview.
- Don’t forget to proof read
Check your CV and application letter for typos or grammatical errors. With so many CVs to review, many recruiters say that applications with mistakes just go straight in the bin. Use your spell checker and get a friend or family member to take a look at it for you. Most recruiters and employers will assume that if your CV is written carelessly then that attitude will carry over into your work.
- Provide recent examples of your achievements
Ensure these closely match the requirements of the job. A lot of CVs simply list duties and responsibilities but don't spell out the value provided to the employer. Use the action and result model to add impact. For example, "I led a team of 20 staff that hit their sales targets every quarter" is more impressive than simply, "I led a team of 20 staff". Or, "I introduced a new incentive scheme" is less informative than, "I introduced a new incentive scheme that reduced staff turnover by 20%."
- Have realistic expectations
It is essential that you are applying for jobs that are in line with your skills, training and qualifications. It’s great to dream bug, but at the same time employers will generally have a wide selection of applicants to choose from, and so naturally they will look to hire those with the right qualifications. If your qualifications don’t meet the type of job you would like to have, then it may be time to go back and study.
- Perfect your interview technique
Many interviewers complain that interviewees let themselves down by turning up late and inappropriately dressed. Make sure you avoid these common mistakes and demonstrate that you have prepared well for the interview; plan to spend at least two hours researching the organisation and interviewers. Use the company website and other resources, such as LinkedIn, to find out more about the company and the interviewer.
Listen to the questions carefully and demonstrate your motivation and commitment by speaking with real passion about your experience. You can also prepare your answers to some of the most commonly asked interview questions:
- Tell us about yourself
- What do you know about us?
- Why do you want to work for us?
- What are your key strengths?
- Why should we hire you?
Practise your answers using a video camera or ask a trusted friend or family member to give you feedback on your performance. These are simple strategies that might just see you win the job.
- Prepare your own questions.
Many interviewers say that it is often the interviewee's questions that reveal their true motivation and commitment to the job. The first interview is not the time to be asking about holidays or working hours. Ask questions that demonstrate the time you have spent preparing for the interview and your level of knowledge about the employer's business. For example, you could say, "I understand that you are opening an office in New York, how will that affect your sales figures next year?" Or, "I see from your accounts that profits increased by 20% last year, do you think you'll be able to maintain that in the current market conditions?"
- Be aware that interview techniques have changed.
Employers still conduct traditional or biographical interviews but increasingly they are also using behavioural or competency interviews to probe your past experience and test that you're fit for a particular job. Questions that begin, "can you tell us about a time.." or "can you give us an example…" are almost certainly competency questions.
To answer effectively, use the STAR model: situation, task, action and result. Most interviewers will assume that your very structured answers will also be reflected in your approach to your work.
- Clean up your social media page
There’s nothing wrong with having a social media presence and posting the occasional picture of your dog, child, or home improvement project. But if your profile contains inappropriate language or images, you’d be wise to remove them as early on in your job search as possible. It’s estimated that 60% of employers use social networking sites to research job candidates, but another thing you should know is that 49% of hiring managers have passed over applicants in the past due to unsavory details on their respective profiles. The lesson? Stick to the family photos and don’t risk an otherwise viable opportunity.
- Be prepared to attend an assessment day
Employers use assessment centres as part of their selection process. These may be half or full day events run for a number of candidates. They were typically used for graduate jobs but they are increasingly being used to select more experienced staff, particularly where there are multiple vacancies.